I just got the great news that my fusion has taken very well and the C5/C6 area is now one bone! My Operation was only a little over 2 months ago.
For what it's worth my operation was August 14th, 2006
1) ACDF C5/C6
2) OWN BONE
3) NO HARDWARE
4) PHILLY COLLAR 2 MONTHS
5) SOFT COLLAR FOR SLEEPING
6) I USED A HOSPITAL BED WITH BACK AND LEG LIFT at home
7) I WENT BACK TO WORK FROM MY HOUSE THE SAME WEEK AS OPERATION
8) NO THROAT PAIN
9) NO HIP PAIN (B0NE GRAF SIGHT)
10) ALL NUMBING IS GONE
11) NO PAIN AT THIS TIME.
I had severe cord compression, buldged herniated disc, numbing in both legs, hands, arms, shoulders and face. I feel like a 20 year old now. While any surgery should be debated long and hard.... this was a no brainer. The surgery post op: I had very litttle pain. My neck was sore for 3 weeks but it started feeling good by one month. While i did work, I used a headset and laptop from the hospital bed. I had zero issues typing. (except spelling
I wish everybody luck and hope their surgery is a success like mine. To think I can ski and ride my Harley again.... off to the sunset.
Glad to hear of your success....Would you clarify for me that you DID have pain in your legs? I have issues at c4/c5, c5/c6, & big problems at c6/c7......I also have pain in my legs but my NS says that the tingling, numbness and pain in my legs are not connected to my neck? Please clarify your symptoms........I am getting a second opinion.....quilter58
I had numbing in my feet. Not a lot of pain.... but numbing. To be honest I don't recall what the NS said about the numbing feet???? My only area that was fused was C5/C6. Full blown cord compression. I think I'm very lucky not to have more lingering issues. I realize that this is still early in game, but at this point I feel great. I have some sore spots in my neck muscles after PT, but I get no Arm pain and no feet numbimg.
While a very serious surgery, I can't believe how quick the recovery was. I don't want to give anyone false hope, but I'm the other side of the coin that rarely get's talked about online. It's unfortunate but most internet sites only have negative feedback. I glad to state that there is some success as well!
I will continue to take it easy for another 6-12 months and then get on with my skiing, skating, tae kwon do and riding my Harley. A funny story. Prior to my surgery I had my 1989 FL 80 Harley chromed and painted. I had the gas drained and brought the bike into our living room. I used the bike and riding again, as motivation to get better and carry on with things i love.
NYD THANK YOU for responding about the leg issue,,, I too have numbing in my feet no pain just numb at times , that asleep feeling, I think a good attitude makes a difference in any surgery outcome , if you anticipate good results and not focus on pain , that can make a difference.......thank you for all of your info.......very encouraging... good blessings in your healing.......hope you are back out for a little scoot really quick.........quilter58
NYD - great news on the fusion and glad to hear you're feeling so good.
Quilter58 - I had numbness/tingling in my lower shin and ankle. My ortho told me that the leg numbness was not related to the neck problems, but funny how the leg stuff ALWAYS happened at the same time as similar arm numbness and tingling. Too much of a coincidence for me.
There are, of course, many other conditions that can bring about leg/foot pain or numbness, but I wouldn't completely rule out a relation to your cervical issues.
Congrat NYD on the great news! I had numbness/tingleing in my feet,legs, arms and occasionally face. It was that kind of falling asleep feeling. My legs would actually fall asleep within a minute of crossing them. I was told by a NS that the leg/foot feelings were not related to my c6-c7 spinal compression. Three weeks ago I had my disc replaced with an artificial one. Tingling is all gone. I actually took a nap the other day with my legs crossed and bent. When I woke an hour later, there was no tingling still! Besides the obvious neck stiffness, the only other problem I am having is a click/pop when I swallow along with some acid reflux. I'm going to call the NS tomorrow and talk to him about it.
Wow, we are at the extreme end of these ACDF ops. I used the old way of using my own bone and fusion and you have the artrificial disc. How many ops with a manmade disc has your NS done? Very Interesting
I believe I am one of his first five. Therefore, I am part of a study. A "lab-rat" so to speak. His facility is one of twenty across the states doing this for Globus Medical. Kind of scarey, but I think I will be better off in the long run. I did a little research and found that they have been doing it for years overseas with great success. It's just a matter of red tape over here. We shall see.
Congrats on your 100% fusion. Don't know if you remember I had ACDF around the same time (August 11). I am doing very well so far but have not had my x-ray since 1 month post op. At that point I was well on my way to a successful fusion. I still have some post op pain but P T is helping with that. I'm glad I had it done, what a difference! Take Care painfulneck ACDF 5/6 donor bone , no hardware
PT has me doing pretty much the same stretches I did before my surgery. Ear to shoulder ,hold 20-30 sec, looking over my shoulder each side hold 20-30 sec, looking down then up, holding each one 20-30 secs. Generally just gentle stretching to get back my ROM. Proceed with caution! LOL painfulneck
NYD, one more question for you....I need the surgery but wondering if I should wait till after the holidays.....there seems to be so much involved with recovery , I am wondering would it be best to wait till after the holidays,,,(shopping, get togethers, etc) what do you think , were you able to get around , and did you have to stop driving and for how long........thanks for your input...quilter58
I didn't drive for 7 weeks. It's not until I could wear the soft collar for a part of the day that I tried driving. I had no hardware so I was in the hard collar most of the time. You cannot drive with it on. You can't turn you head at all. I stayed out of the car as much as possible. If something traumatic was to happen, the car would be the place. The thought of getting in an accident with a bone, that close to my spinal cord.. was enough for me to jst take it easy. You could go Xmas shopping. Not a whole bunch...but some.
If you have to get it done, do it ASAP. There is never a good time. It's very easy to find reasons not to. I put mine off for a year. I didn't need to suffer that extra time. Having a serious operation hanging over you, being pain ect..
If your pain isn't life threatening and you can live with it awhile longer, I would consider PUTTING OFF the surgery until after the holidays. You're going to be an unhappy camper for at least a few weeks, possibly longer...
I guess one possible drawback to waiting- if your insurance plan is a Jan-Dec plan. You might have deductibles or co-insurance that you'd have to meet again if you waited until the next calendar year...
bw67.. thank you so much for the idea of insurance deductables....hadn't really thought of that......all of my deducts are met for this year......so I guess that really answers my own question....I guess the family will just have to step up .........thank you so much for the input........good blessings to you.....quilter58
That was a good suggestion regarding the insurance deductables, too often we don't think of that stuff! Just be sure that your insurance year is 1/1-12/31 (some employers do a 7/1-6/30 or a different 'benefit' year).
I had an aspen collar on for 6 weeks and therefore didn't drive until that came off. Once it came off short distance driving was fine.
Although our health care system is really screwed up here in Canada, I must say I had one of the best NS in the ACDF feild. He is very well respected and he and my surgery was FREE, part of being Canadian and our right to health care. We pay a very low monthy fee for a CARE card. (30 bucks) With the card all of the public health things are available to me. Even my pain meds. I've been in pain for over 7 years, prior to surgery and have only had to pay 10% of my meds. A damn good thing, as the amount of Oxycontin I take is well over $10,000 a year. Now I face the wonderfull trick of getting off them!!!!!!!!